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Art news and events in Singapore and around the world

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  • 10/19/16--02:31: RIAU
  • RIAU is a 30-minutes film which documents Zai Kuning’s extended period of stay with the Orang Laut (sea gypsies), living in a nomadic fishing village around the Riau islands in the early 2000s. Weaving recorded impressions of their daily life together with the artist’s anecdotes, the film is an intimation of the dislocated histories embodied by the Orang Laut. Created as part of the artist’s larger project on the Riau archipelago, the film has been screened in various film festivals and biennales including the International Film Festival Rotterdam, the Busan International Film Festival, and the 3rd Fukuoka Asian Art Triennial. This film screening is presented as an opening event for “There are too many episodes of people coming here…”, an exhibition that examines particular sites around Singapore and the currency of their histories. The screening will be followed by a panel discussion between the artist Zai Kuning and the art historian T.K. Sabapathy. RIAU (PG) 25 October 2016, 7.30pm UCC Theatre riau.peatix.com  

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    “There are too many episodes of people coming here…” builds on the previous exhibition’s interest towards the textuality of exhibitions, bringing in additional materials by artists Charles Lim, Dennis Tan and Zai Kuning as a means to rewrite and open up newer points of departure. Each work or project may be considered in its own right and contexts or may be read simultaneously as episodic units of meaning. This inclusion of newer materials by the aforementioned artists generates a new complexity for the exhibition, but at the same time points to the very conditions of the exhibitionary medium. The exhibition title is based on the words of Wak Ali, a custodian of a Muslim shrine that once stood on the banks of the Kallang River. It is at once an affirmation and a lament about the potentials of a site that may transform the individual regard, and the very contingency of positions on immediate experiences and commitments. An exhibition can only harbour meanings that are provisional and conditional if it is to be an active site for a public with an active agency. Is this our purpose? If so, what of methods and practice? Venue: NX1, NUS Museum Duration: 25 October [...]

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    This exhibition seeks to challenge our relationship with Australian forests. Merri Randell creates hybrid mediated landscapes to represent her experience, depicting forests vast in scale and detail with the same forms captured from different angles and perspectives. Through the addition of sound and motion these hybrid landscapes come alive and embody the typically hidden respiratory, digestive and reproductive botanical events of these natural areas. Chris Denaro’s work focuses on the night-time experience of forests. In the absence of light the world becomes a void, and the imagination becomes a powerful and uncanny force. Denaro draws on this concept of the void – inspired by uncanny peripheral glimpses from the night-time forest. By inserting these ‘imaginary’ constructions into a ‘real’ gallery space these artists confront audience’s perceptions of nature and place. Brenda May Gallery 2 Danks Street Waterloo NSW Australia 2017 29 October to 24 November, 2016 Open: Tue to Fri 11-6, Sat 10-6 http://www.brendamaygallery.com.au/

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    This fourth manifestation of the Sculptural Forms series, first started in 2009, began after Carol Murphy came across an online advertisement for an artwork at an English Antiques Shop. This elegant figure resembled a Cycladic sculpture, with the stylisation of the head and arms entwined. Murphy explains, “I have never wanted to own an artwork more. Upon first seeing it, I was captivated, with no providence attached, it resembled something Henry Moore may have carved, as it required considerable skill for its size… I expect it may have been carved by a European sculptor of some note, but somehow was separated from its history.”   This exhibition commenced with Murphy’s desire to create a pastiche of the work that first captured her imagination nine years ago — a response to her immediate connection to it. It is also a continuation of a series of exhibitions that presented figures formed in simple shapes, however, the new works are more stylised, elongated, forced into impossible positions, and pared back of recognisable features. Brenda May Gallery 2 Danks Street Waterloo NSW Australia 2017 29 October to 24 November 2016 Open: Tue to Fri 11-6, Sat 10-6 http://www.brendamaygallery.com.au/

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    For the past few years my work has been driven by an inner malaise and dissatisfaction with “the way things are”. This time I am relieved to be returning to a favoured theme…a focus on intimacy, and the body. These paintings are a celebration of flesh and touch. I wanted to get back to the essence of our being…the complex joy of love, and play between people. The touching suggests a “music” of intimacy to me…the duets and trios play together in melodies and patterns that flow as they make contact. There are still dissonant moments but this becomes another part of the energies… The entwined flesh is a fugue of shapes and shadows. Moved by the rhythms and textures of cherished bodies, I have played with these elements to transform lovers at play into a cantata of forms. – James Guppy, 2016 Brenda May Gallery 2 Danks Street Waterloo NSW Australia 2017 29 October to 24 November, 2016 Open: Tue to Fri 11-6, Sat 10-6 http://www.brendamaygallery.com.au/

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    Author and journalist Nicholas Yong launches his second book at the Singapore Writers Festival on Sunday, November 6. In “Track Faults and Other Glitches”, Nicholas Yong takes us on a journey into an alternate Singapore, where the impossible becomes real. Deep in the heart of the Zombie Civil Service, a secret meeting is held to preempt an impending disaster. In the heartlands, a devoted Shiba Inu, a dog breed from Japan, seeks the divine in her quest for answers. And what happens when an MRT train goes underground, and never comes back out? This collection of 10 short stories transports you from the deeply familiar to the supernatural, exploring things that cannot and should not be. The book launch takes place from 5.30pm on November 6 at the Arts House, Gallery II.

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    Hong Kong’s shop cats are the little emperors of their retail kingdoms. When photographer Marcel Heijnen moved to the city he was immediately drawn to these photogenic mouse-hunters, and this book is the charming result.

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    The eighth edition of the Happiness Private Limited show is a hybrid of William’s trademark fantasia and the botanical world. The work is presented as a series of pseudo-botanical drawings on thirty-six species of popular plants frequently encountered in Singapore. A playful study on symbiosis as each piece of work documents the anomalous alliance of an imagined facultative symbiont to its vascular plant host. Peculiar Botany by William Sim With strung up hammocks, aeries and shrub-houses, the partnership might seem more commensal than mutualistic at times. Only a bona fide botanist knows, for a plant to truly thrive, companionship and affection are as crucial as sunlight, water, and nutrients. The exhibition features thirty-six paintings by William Sim and a selection of sculptures in collaboration with Lush Tan. “Tillandsia” by William Sim “Botanical Singapore – An illustrated guide to popular plants and flowers” by William Sim, a hardcover coffee-table book based upon the series of drawings from the show is for sale during the opening. Opening reception, 29 October 2016, Saturday (Deepavali) at 3.30pm. Utterly Art

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    Krisis Conversations is a series of interviews of the artists - Singaporean, British and international - who are part of the UK exhibition KRISIS. Supported by Singapore National Arts Council and Arts Council England.

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    Your secret diary could be a future bestseller. Learn how use your diaries as early practice for page-turning novels in this workshop by Leila Rasheed. Author of the Bathsheba Clarice de Trop’s Diary series, Leila will guide you through creative writing basics, from developing characters to building up storylines. For ages 8 to 11. Seats for this workshop are limited. This workshop is free with registration. Register here: http://diary.peatix.com/ Date: 12 November 2016 Time: 2pm – 3.30pm Venue: The Arts House, Living Room

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  • 10/23/16--20:29: Abstraction in Three Mediums
  • ‘Abstraction in Three Mediums’ will explore the boundaries of abstract painting in various artistic practices—stretching the limits of the medium of painting, challenging its conditions and working methods. This exhibition will feature works by three artists based in Singapore including Laila Azra, Chong Yanhong and Raymond Yap. Laila Azra’s gestural paintings are built-up through layers of acrylic paint on canvas overlaid with threads, liquid latex and thick streams of paint–a multifaceted layer of place, space and time. Laila Azra’s compositions are sparked by a personal experience at a universal level. She imbues paint with emotional resonance yet at the same time restricts those emotions within the confines of her often indefinable and mysterious forms. Chong Yanhong’s works explore the ever-changing landscape of Singapore and the underlying structures of architecture in their different phases of construction. Chong adopts a different method and approach in the presentation of her work. In her recent practice, photographs are printed on sheets of paper and then applied to the canvas by a transfer process. Using common spaces as her subjects such as, a concert hall, an auditorium, a stadium, and also interiors, she alters and enhances visual and architectural space while leaving some familiar elements [...]

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    Ahead the upcoming 5th edition of the Singapore Biennale, this lecture is an introduction to the history, concepts, and strategies behind today’s curatorial-based periodic international art blockbuster exhibitions; also known as “Art Biennales”. When: Tuesday, October 25 Where: Visual Arts Centre, Dhoby Ghaut Conducted by: Ruben de la Nuez Presented by: Corcovado Arts Register at www.corcovadoarts.com

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    How a word can have multiple meanings at the same time, and have their meanings change over time, is an interesting mirror to the unfolding of history. This lecture looks at one word in particular, ‘sayang’, charting its path of adaptation from pre-colonial and colonial histories to the post-colonial present; and considering how the changes in its meanings and applications – from fables to novels to cinema and pop culture – tells us more about ourselves, like how our own sensibilities and worldviews have evolved, leading to the postmodern present which we inhabit today. The word remains the same, but do we sayang today as our ancestors did? FEATURING Farish Noor Singapore Farish Noor is Associate Professor and head of the PhD programme at the S Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Nanyang Technological University. He has written on a range of subjects related to South-east Asia, and has just completed a book on the invention of the idea of South-east Asia in 19th century colonial discourse. He has hosted documentary series on Channel NewsAsia, amongst them, the acclaimed Across Borders with Dr Farish, which won Best Documentary Series (International Affairs) at the New York Festivals 2015. Tickets can be purchased [...]

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    Who doesn’t love LEGO? Bring your favourite LEGO characters to life in this stop-motion animation ‘playshop’ by creating a one-minute animation film. This could be the start of your own version of The Lego Movie! Materials will be provided, including a thumb drive for you to bring home a copy of your film clip. For ages 14 and up. Seats for this workshop are limited. Sun Nov 13, 2016 2:00 PM – 5:00 PM SGT VENUE: The Arts House, Living Room FEATURING Paperplane Singapore Paperplane is a creative studio with a passion for words, art and technology. They make stories for education and entertainment purposes, and use their gift for visual storytelling to help companies all over the world connect with their audience. Tickets can be purchased at: http://lego.peatix.com/?lang=en-sg

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    Lionel Shriver is feted for the way she takes on huge contemporary issues, and in her latest novel, The Mandibles: A Family, 2029-2047, she wrestles with the spiraling effects of the economic meltdown, such as poverty, theft, and prostitution. The 2005 Orange Prize winner for We Need to Talk About Kevin will speak about her latest work, and its eerie resonance today. The 30-minute lecture will be followed by 30 minutes of Q&A. Event Date Sun, 13 Nov 2016 11.30am Venue National Gallery Singapore, Auditorium This session is made possible with the assistance of the U.S. Embassy FEATURING Lionel Shriver USA Lionel Shriver is the author of 12 novels, including the New York Times bestsellers So Much for That (a finalist for the 2010 National Book Award and the Wellcome Trust Book Prize) and The Post-Birthday World (Entertainment Weekly’s 2007 Book of the Year). Winner of the 2005 Orange prize, the international bestseller We Need to Talk About Kevin was adapted into a feature film in 2011. Shriver won the BBC National Short Story Award in 2014. Her work has been translated into 30 languages. The Mandibles: A Family, 2029-2047, a Sunday Times top-ten bestseller, was released this spring. Tickets can [...]

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    Between the Lines: Rant and Rave II is a spinoff of Rant and Rave, first staged by The Finger Players in 2012 and 2014. In this latest iteration, Between the Lines sheds light on the history and evolution of our literary scene: from the literature during our post-colonial days, the advent of book retail giant Borders in the 90s, to the literary activisms that have galvanised writers and readers of today. Relive the conversations and events that made history with actors Serene Chen and Jean Ng as they take on the roles of real-life poets, novelists, publishers and many more in this loving tribute to the written word. There will be an exclusive post-show book sale. Payment in cash only. This production is by The Finger Players and commissioned by the Singapore Writers Festival. FEATURING The Finger Players Singapore The Finger Players, one of Singapore’s leading theatre companies, is known for their innovative theatre style. Focusing on adult and young audiences, they use a fusion of puppet theatre and other art disciplines. They have staged over 30 multidisciplinary productions since 2004. The company has won a total of 17 of The Straits Times Life! Theatre Awards, which include Production of [...]

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    The fifth edition of the Singapore Biennale 2016 opens tomorrow (27 October) and will run till 26 February 2017. It is titled An Atlas of Mirrors and is organised by the Singapore Art Museum (SAM).

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    AC43 is pleased to present Impressions 2016: Paintings by Zhang Chun Lei. Featuring 26 oil and acrylic paintings that capture the essence of changing landscapes past and present, these artworks come alive with Zhang Chun Lei’s unique pictorial language – one which incorporates the use of dots with line alternations and colour variations, revealing the intrinsic beauty of familiar structures amidst the unassailable changes of a fast-developing, modern city-state. Born in 1969, Shanghai, Zhang Chun Lei served his apprenticeship under the renowned Chinese painting master Jiang Fengbai prior to graduating from the School of Arts Soochow University. He later received his Masters from the University of South Australia in 2003. Zhang was awarded the ‘Masterpiece Award’ under the Best Chinese and Overseas-Chinese Paintings, Calligraphy, Carvings and Engraving category in 1993. In 1994, he was awarded The Prize of Excellent Works in the China Youth Calligraphy and Painting Competition. Zhang also won a commemorative award in the China New Times ‘La Tour Eiffel (Paris)’ Artist Cup Competition the very same year. Since moving to Singapore in 1996, Zhang has taken on art projects both locally and overseas. His versatility shines through in his undertaking of different mediums throughout his artistic career [...]

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    Bhavna Shivayogimath’s debut solo exhibition, The Topless Liberation Front explores issues of the female identity such as self-expression, sisterhood, and diversity employing a multi-coloured palette and drawing references from pop culture and advertisement. The relationship between theme and image using humour as a conduit is a central component of Shivayogimath’s work. Playfulness punctuates the tone of the exhibition by using punch line–esque titles and wordplay. Her pieces seek to create a dialogue with the viewer through the inclusion of a woman’s perspective, with honesty and moxie. Shivayogimath’s light-heartedness is a device that allows viewers to encounter the works more directly, in a way they can easily understand and respond to. This exhibition intends to use humour to grasp the audience’s attention and invite them to see beyond the joke and enjoy the nuance and depth of the subject matter. Date: 29 November 2016 – 8 January 2017 Venue: Artistry, 17 Sungai Pinang, Singapore 199149

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    Dai Yun has attained outstanding achievements in contemporary sculpture in China. Red bricks, grey bricks, cement and concrete iron have become his iconic sculptural languages, which is unique in the art community of Chinese contemporary sculpture. Leo Gallery is delighted to present Dai Yun’s first solo exhibition in Hong Kong during Hong Kong Art Week 2016, and is honoured to have invited the well-known sculpture art critic Dr Sun Zhenhua to give academic advice on this exhibition. Architecture builds the city; cement, concrete iron and bricks create the structure of a city. When the artist removes the external visual elements, the essence in structural framework of sculpture is exposed. The texture of materials and the aesthetics of objects form a strong contrast and create unusual perceptions and artistic languages. In recent years, Dai Yun has been creating more challenging object images like the weapon AK 47, a designer sofa and a bike. These familiar objects are created by primitive building materials in agricultural society which give an experience of unspeakable bare reality. D A I Y U N Bare Reality Academic Advisor: Dr Sun Zhenhua 孫振華博士 Opening Reception: 6 pm – 8 pm Friday, 2016. 11. 4 Exhibition until 2016.12.30 [...]

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